The armchair traveller

Criss-crossing air and water
Clocking miles none can measure
What’s the deal globe-trotter?
Searching for hidden treasure?

Oh, I’m just teasing!
Clearly
You’re a lucky chap
who’s nearly
out the door again…so fast?
Heavens no! My time has passed

Along you go without me
Arrivederci! Adiós!
See Aruba, Bonaire, Fiji,
Here I’ll be in Kinross

Chow on empanadas,
duruka and ceviche
Spy blue-green iguanas,
Explore your coral reefs

Tour the Mayan ruins
Speak the tongue of stranger nations
Take guided walks – from palaces
– to Ceylon tea plantations

Away with your pity! Away with you, pet!
I wish so too, but life ploughs on
I’m happy with these hills, these sheep,
My tea and buttered scone

Write me under a Judas tree
Send me olives and black rice
In fact, don’t feel obliged my lad
Two, three stories will suffice

Don’t think of me with sorrow
I know fine well that life is short
Yet wrong you are, and fluffed you’d be
To assume from my passport
That I’m a mere provincial,
Uncultivated miser
For what such pages don’t disclose
Is I’m an early riser;
The dawn of day, the morning dew;
Life’s little reasons
(In my book)

The boundless world, all around
And all I do is look

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I wrote this poem a few years ago. It was published in the The Open Mouse ezine under the title: ‘the sun rises everywhere’.

Diary days

I take to journalling during particular times in my life. Rereading passages is like saying hello to my former self: a funny, albeit cringe-worthy experience. Thought I’d share some unedited excerpts from a not too old journal:

” Hello, new journal. I wonder how long I’ll keep you for. Hopefully until I’ve written in your last page and there are no more pages left. Hopefully until the very end, but things often don’t turn out as we hope, do they? ”

” Allow me to introduce myself: I’m Mariam. You’ll get to know me a lot better as more ink runs, no doubt. But for now, the fact that I’m Mariam is all you need to know. I will be Mariam today, tomorrow, and any other day that I choose to write in you, so I don’t have to keep repeating myself. “

” My feet are cold. Ice-cold. It’s a cold, wet day. “

” There’s a lady sitting next to me who is clearly a blogger or a copywriter. Good for her. How nice it would be to earn a living from writing; from delivering information in stylish ways; from educating and raising awareness on issues one finds important. “

“Good morning journal. I’m gonna call you ‘jo’ from now on, that ok? ”

“Note to self: don’t ever again order a mocha. Stick to coffee, tea or sparkling water. No palpitation-inducing, 21st century urban monster hybrid beverages. ”

” It’s so cold and dark. Why did I set a 6am alarm? I’ve put my yoga clothes on. I might do yoga. Then again, I might not. Though I probably will. Why else would I be up at this hour and dressed like this? ”

” The sun is out. It’s a fresh, bright day. No reason to moan about the weather. Going to visit my old university professor, D.A.C. Interested to see what feelings and emotions come up. Insecurity maybe. Nostalgia definitely. “

” Wearing red and black today. Hair is looking sleek and bouncy. “

” I’m glad my dad is coming home for good. Though not as glad as he is — he sounds astronomically ECSTATIC about it. Guess that demonstrates how miserable he is over there. Loneliness bites. “

” I can feel the holiday season in the air. I can see it and I can hear it. “

” Totally lacking enthusiasm. It’s one of those mornings. Reluctant to write ‘one of those days’ as I don’t want to resign myself to having a rubbish day already. “

” I love cats. I want a cat. Like, I really want a cat. “

” I’m wearing a nice green jumper. ”

” Cheese and broccoli: a stellar combination. “

” I woke up much later than usual. It’s dark out, there’s no one here but me, and I have no where to be. “

” Three amazing things happened today, but I’ll tell you about them later. “

Ill-matched

Two poems about ill-matches.

Harry Hopper

Hung around with a guy for a very long time
certain he was a good aim
he was a dollar, I was his dime
Harry Hopper was his name
Had a long string of exes
a home back in Texas
and a smile so disarming
His family history
was capped in mystery
never once did I find this alarming.

Harry Hopper, Diamond Robber
— how did I learn it so late?
He hid all the clues, made every excuse
he’s hunted by every state!

Now he’s fled like a ghost
but what furies me most
is with all those diamonds he carried
It slipped his dish
to grant my small wish
It appears I’ll never be married.

Feedback to the Matchmaker

His trousers are an inch to short
He has a crooked grin
He does not see the fun in sport
I will not marry him

He’s much too spoiled by his mother
His friends I can’t abide
He’s jealous of his only brother
Find him another bride!

He seldom speaks with warmth and love
He knows not modesty
He has his own opinions of
What a wife should be

All that to say, my answer’s no
And solid as a tree
But tell me this before you go…
What did he think of me?

Scavenger

Sunday scavenge
things to pick;
scraps and branches,
thin and thick
Walk with me
in nature’s luxe
Hoist your knees
and close your books
Little poet,
it’s in your eyes:
you’re just a scavenger
in disguise.